Tag: balamadana

Buddhism and Islands

In my daily newsletter, the following quote was displayed the other day:

Awake and rejoice in watchfulness. Understand the wisdom of the enlightened. By watching keenly and working hard, the wise one may build himself an island which no flood can sweep away. The thoughtless man does not care, but the attentive man looks on wakefulness as his greatest treasure. Meditate, and in your wisdom realize nirvana, the highest happiness. Dhammapada

I used to write those blog posts over at Balamadana but haven’t for a while. So I would like to share it here.

My Island Theory kind of fits with the above. It states that you move from island to island in order to develop, and only settle when you are where your body is in 100% harmony with your spirit.

The wise man building himself the island he can develop in. No one can touch him or his thoughts whilst he moving up through personal development. And, the island becomes a nice analogy for your little space. Doesn’t it?

If you are interested in the theory, let me know. It is a bit out of date, and I believe the download link doesn’t work anymore.

Love and Kindness,
Volker

Buddhist Thoughts

The other day in one of my newsletters and alerts, I got the following Buddhist Wisdom I would like to share with you:

You should be an island to yourself, a refuge to yourself, not dependent on any other but taking refuge in the truth and none other than the truth. And how do you become an island and a refuge to yourself? In this way. You see and contemplate your body as composed of all the forces of the universe. Ardently and mindfully you steer your body-self by restraining your discontent with the world about you. In the same way, observe and contemplate your feelings and use that same ardent restraint and self-possession against enslavement by greed or desire. By seeing attachment to your body and feelings as blocking the truth, you dwell in self-possession and ardent liberation from those ties. This is how you live as an island to yourself and a refuge to yourself. Whoever dwells in this contemplation, islanded by the truth and taking refuge in the truth–that one will come out of the darkness and into the light.

– Digha Nikaya

buddhaThe reason why I am sharing it is that it reminds me a bit about the Island Theory I wrote about a year ago. I think that with Marcelo being re-ordained and me not writing about Buddhism and Management that much anymore, I am neglecting my thoughts a bit.

You should be dependent on the truth only, something you can take refuge in. That means to me that becoming the island, the self development island, as myself, like my own coach, I have to find truth in myself. I would need to become one with the forces of the universe and my thoughts that are purified within myself. Just by creating that, I could become my own god – at least that is how I interpreted Steven Seagal when he speaks about being god?

By far I don’t want to call myself god. What I think these lines are trying to say is that if you base your life on truth and yourself on truth and if you become refuge for others and combine all forces of the universe in yourself, then you get a “god like” feeling. Of course, it depends on the different religion to define “god”. And, I appreciate this being controversial.

What about from a personal development perspective? I think by becoming once within yourself, based on truth, spirituality, and wisdom, you can offer others and yourself help, become your own personal coach and a coach for other people at the same time.

Then there is the attachment perspective. Any attachment makes you block a bit of your thoughts on how to feel the truth and how to be one with your body. The less attachment you have, the more relaxed and free in your mind you can get.

This is difficult: you don’t want to give up your money, TV, laptop, furniture, house etc, just to purify your mind. Or do you? If it was that simple, would you do it? Maybe, from my point of view, you don’t have to. But you should not put your main focus on these things but a focus of being as minimalistic as you can. Don’t clutter your life would be the simple message.

Have a think and let me know what you think too. Share your thoughts.

Love and Kindness,
Volker

Sunday Column (17)

This week was overwhelming. What should I say?

I cut down on the interviews a bit because I really want to enjoy the time with my wee boy. He is growing so quickly and is VERY cute! We decided to put pictures online and on Facebook but not making them all publicly available. So please contact me or my wife if you want to see some more.
Monday night was a hail storm. I put pictures of that on Facebook too. Crazy weather for early June, I have to say!

Tuesday we went back to hospital. Colin was diagnosed with over 10% weight loss (10.7%) and jaundice. Both are relatively normal and after many tests and endless waiting in the hospital, we got the “all ok” stamp. Jenny needed to stay in hospital with the boy and I went home. However, after we had such a good experience with the hospital, Princess Royal in Farnborough, we were highly disappointed with this stay. Each midwife said something different, confusing the new mother and father, stressing us out and pushed us beyond our comfort zone. I would have expected more empathy, care and respect from professional midwifes. Some midwifes even admitted that their colleagues are “bad“. Anyhow, we are home again, and we are happy again and wee Colin is well. He is eating a lot and already has put on a lot of weight. I so love him!

This episode resulted in me taking the decision to cancel another meeting with a recruitment consultant. I have to say that there are very good ones out there that really care about you and the job you want to get into. Some just ignore you, don’t care and play with you, knowing you might be desperate to find a job. I am not overly, so got really annoyed with some. One of the biggest agencies in our industry, didn’t even manage to get back to me although I applied to 2 jobs, phoned twice, and added them on instant messenger. Funny enough they have a few jobs going I was put forward through other agencies. Really bad. Once I have found a job, I might just write a bit about my experience and tell you which recruitment consultants are good and which ones I did not like 🙂

Thursday and Friday we managed to chill out a bit and prepare the house for the arrival of my mother in law. She arrived late Friday and we had a really good time. 3 generations in one little house for a weekend. What a brilliant time we had.

The amount of presents we got is overwhelming. People are so generous and caring. This is so fantastic. Thank you all so much for your pressies and cards. We will respond asap.

Colin on Fathers Day
Colin on Fathers Day

Besides the immense time I am spending during my paternity leave to help Jenny and little Colin, I still go for interviews. This is a shame but needs to be done, e.g. I am very thankful to have the opportunity to get interviewed by great companies and hope to have a new position soon. I keep you posted. Hopefully, once I have a decision, I can take another week off – just for the family.

On my Balamadana project, the blog I write with the Buddhist monk, I wanted to give you an update. Marcelo who was a monk when I met him and then left his monk hood in London, and we then started the blog to write about Buddhism and Management. He now decided to go back and become a monk again, he is being re-ordained in Brazil. I am very very happy for him and think it is a great step for him and he will truly enjoy it. Unfortunately, this means the project Balamdana will be on hold for a while and I am thinking if I continue there or continue to introduce a Buddhist column into this blog. I keep you posted.

Wish me luck for next week. Fingers crossed and I keep you posted.

Love and Happiness from all of us,
Volker

Why am I a Buddhist?

As most of you know I feel being a Buddhist. And, I see Buddhism as part of my life.

My personal development trainings I offer with cb consulting are based on the compassion and love I give to any living being.

Just recently I wrote an article on my other blog about “Buddhism – Why am I a Buddhist“?

My Christian values, the moral life I got from there, combined with my drive for personal development, made me find a home in Buddhism.

The 5 percepts of Buddhism fit in with my moral life and the idea of helping others, to gain happiness and wisdom, is something that you should share with everyone. Buddhism, and of course other religions, let you do that. However, Buddhism is more of a “way of life” for me rather than a “strict religious view”.

Please read the article on my other blog and leave a comment. Curious to hear what you think!

Love and Kindness
Volker

How many web services do you need?

My friend Don K posted an article on Facebook and I would like to share this article with you.

It is about how many web services one person can use?

I agree. Looking at myself:

  1. at least 2 email addresses I check privately
  2. 1 email at work
  3. Facebook
  4. Linkedin
  5. Xing
  6. Balamadana
  7. Search Food
  8. Volker’s blurb
  9. Plaxo

And, if that was not enough, what about things like twitter or flickr. Should I or shouldn’t I? Do RSS Feed count? If so, add another 10 I read regularly and at least 10 on top occasionally. No wonder people complain about information overload. I of course forgot my personal homepage, too.

Then, the question is, do homepages count as web services? Somewhat I think yes, because you would want to update it as it is a personal profile on the web, isn’t it?

Be selective, I guess, is the way forward. Keep it simple. Focus on what you really need instead of trying to get as much information as possible.

As an example. The other day I registered for ALL newsletters from an US online magazine, Media Post. Then I got 20 emails a day and now cut it down to the 3 most important newsletters. You have to be very selective – by the way, good newsletters they are.

Let me know your views! Leave a comment.